New day new challenges.
I did not really know what to do today, When I woke up my legs were as good as when went to bed. My original thought was to repeat yesterday’s approach, come down to Rotorua, have a nice internet brunch and then speed up in Taupo’s direction.
This proved to be a pipe dream approximately 10 yards after I stepped on the bicycle. To say that it was painful to pedal downhill would be an understatement and it took most of my dwindling sense of humour to master the energy to stop and take the last in the bird sign picture.
I am not sure what a mental breakdown looks or feels like but just after I took the picture one of the water bottles on the bike came loose and I had to stop and collect it. When I had set it back on the bike I stood for a moment and all my demons came to visit me at once and without a warning I was standing at the side of the road in a flood of tears. Even for me this is not normal. I picked myself up and completed the 14 miles to Rotorua and, on route, decided that a mini break from riding was now imperative.
I am not sure if it was yesterday’s stage, the fact that there is so much going on in my head or, simply, that I have restarted cycling to far too fast, nonetheless, over a sandwich and juice, the decision was taken: two nights in Rotorua, in an hostel of some form with non cycling activities for a while. This would give me time to catch up with stuff, do the planning ahead that I have neglected to do so far and give the legs time to recover.
I quickly found a nice place bang in the centre of town (http://www.astray.co.nz/) where I have a room the size of a double bed with a single bed inside. I got into it at 12:20 and thought “let see what the mattress is like”, 3 hours later a Whatsapp message made me realise how tired I really was.
After that I did all of the posting from yesterday, a little paperwork and wound myself down to the Rotorua Night Market.
The market took over most of the commercial district in centre Rororua and was composed mainly of craft stands, food stands and a couple of entertainment areas that I took pictures of.
I dined with a Chilean Hot Dog which was delicious and then I took a stroll to the lakefront (pictured at top) and in the process crossed the dining area of town.
I am reserving judgement on the whole of New Zealand as I still have such a long way to go, but one thing is becoming increasingly obvious: life is simpler down here. By this I mean that all the complexities given by the weight of historical legacy that we Europeans are burdened by, just do not exist. This means that living is easier and less troublesome. You can see it in the people that have much more time to be nice and polite to strangers than in most other places have been.
Things are in the main done as they need to be, as if the problems and issues of past generation were purposefully ironed out. Of course it helps that there are no thousand years relicts to preserve, mind you the ones that were there in the form of forests were decimated in the pre awareness years. But it also is credit to a shared desire to be down to heart and accessible. Maybe there is a parallel with the colonisation of America where, there the catalyst was the escape from religious persecution while here it might have been a more recent escape from that form and stuffiness that old Europe is truly good at.